2015 Job Task Analysis

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2015 Job Task Analysis

CFP Board's Job Task Analysis (JTA) is the largest research project in the U.S. related to the body of knowledge for financial planning, and its results are used to verify and update the content of CFP Board’s examination and education requirements.  Conducted every five years, in partnership with a major testing firm, the JTA research of the practice of financial planning incorporates a multi-method approach that involves a number of subject-matter experts, an analysis of emerging trends in the profession, and a large-scale survey of practicing CFP® professionals and educators from CFP Board-Registered Programs.

The results of the 2015 Job Task Analysis include updated lists of Principal Knowledge Topics and Financial Planning Job Task Domains.  The 2015 Principal Knowledge Topics are the basis of CFP Board’s CFP® Certification Examination blueprint, effective with the March 2016 CFP® Certification Examination.* The 2015 Principal Knowledge Topics also serve as the curricular framework for CFP Board’s education requirement, effective August 2015, and they represent the topics CFP Board will accept for continuing education credit, effective January 2016. 

* Non-scored pre-test questions based on the new topics will be included as early as the July 2015 CFP® Certification Examination.

Quick Links: Infographic | Background and Findings | Principal Knowledge Topics | Job Task Domains | Contextual Variables | 2015 Job Task Analysis Summary Report


Background and Findings

Conducted every 5 years, CFP Board’s Job Task Analysis helps to further define the body of knowledge for the financial planning profession, with the results forming the basis for CFP Board’s evaluation of the current CFP® certification requirements and any recommendation for changes to the requirements.  The research also reveals insights into the tasks currently being performed by CFP® professionals and the knowledge requirements needed to fulfill and serve the interests of clients.

The 2015 Job Task Analysis incorporates broad-based input from practicing CFP® professionals, educators from CFP Board-registered academic programs, and subject-matter experts who work to consider practice and emerging trends in financial planning.  The study was conducted over the course of a year and was validated by more than 3,700 CFP® professionals and educators.  In addition to updated lists of Principal Knowledge Topics and Financial Planning Job Task Domains, the 2015 study identified Contextual Variables that are to be considered when dealing with specific financial planning situations.

The 2015 Job Task Analysis findings indicated five areas are most top of mind for today’s practicing financial planners:

  1. Retirement Savings and Income Planning
  2. Education Planning
  3. Holistic and Integrated Financial Planning
  4. Healthcare
  5. Debt Management

Download the 2015 Job Task Analysis Summary Report


2015 Principal Knowledge Topics

The Principal Knowledge Topics serve as the blueprint for the March 2016 and later administrations of the CFP® Certification Examination. Each exam question will be linked to one of the following Principal Knowledge Topics, in the approximate percentages indicated with the general category headings.

The Principal Knowledge Topics also serve as a curricular framework for CFP Board’s education requirement and the subject topics CFP Board accepts for continuing education credit, effective January 2016.

View the 2015 Principal Knowledge Topics (Web page)

Download the 2015 Principal Knowledge Topics (PDF)


2015 Job Task Domains

The Job Task Domains are used to provide context for developing content for the CFP® Certification Examination and other case-based scenarios.

View the 2015 Job Task Domains (Web page)

Download the 2015 Job Task Domains (PDF)


Contextual Variables

In addition to the Principal Knowledge Topics and the Financial Planning Job Task Domains, other important variables are to be considered when dealing with specific financial planning situations. These are referred to as “Contextual Variables” and are used as part of content development for the CFP® Certification Examination or other case-based scenarios.

More specifically, financial planning situations require the application of financial planning knowledge for different types of clients. Important client details to consider as part of financial planning situations are:

  • Family Status (traditional family, single parent, same-sex couples, blended families, widowhood)
  • Net Worth (ultra-high net worth, high net worth, mass affluent, emerging affluent, mass market)
  • Income Level (high, medium, low)
  • Life or Professional Stage ( student, starting a career, career transition, pre-retirement)
  • Other Circumstances (health issues, divorce, change of employment status, aging parents, special needs children)

2015 Job Task Analysis Summary Report

Download the 2015 Job Task Analysis Summary Report


Questions?

Questions about the 2015 Job Task Analysis may be directed to CFP Board’s Examinations staff at 202-379-2200 or examinations@cfpboard.org.

Exam Dates

Upcoming:


Most Recent Exam:
CFP® Certification Examination
Mar. 14–21, 2017

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